Donald Hall was born in 1928 in Hamden, Connecticut, and attended Phillips Exeter, Harvard, Oxford, and Stanford Universities. He taught for 19 years at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor before moving in 1975 to the family farm on Eagle Pond in Wilmot, New Hampshire with his wife, the poet Jane Kenyon.
Hall is the author of sixteen books of poetry, including The One Day (1988), winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award, Without (1998), and most recently The Back Chamber (2011); memoirs, including String To Short To Be Saved (1961), The Best Day The Worst Day: Life with Jane Kenyon (2005) and Unpacking The Boxes: A Memoir of a Life in Poetry (2008); essay collections, such as the Eagle Pond books Seasons at Eagle Pond (1987) and Here at Eagle Pond (1992) and Essays After Eighty (December 2014); children’s books, among them the best-selling Ox-Cart Man (1979), textbooks, and edited collections.
On the death of Jane Kenyon in 1995, he was appointed Poet Laureate of New Hampshire for the second time, having first held the title from 1984-1989. He was Poet Laureate of the United States for 2006-2007. In 2010 Hall was awarded the National Medal of Arts by president Barack Obama.
The collection, which is restricted, is approximately 400 cubic feet in extent and consists of a prodigious amount of correspondence, manuscripts, published works, recordings, and photographs.
- Life at Eagle Pond: The Poetry of Jane Kenyon and Donald Hall
- For an account of Hall’s life in his own words, visit the Peoples Archive.
- A recent blog about Hall in his eighties
- Donald Hall page on Wikipedia